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CHAPTER ONE Can goodness survive life?

Eigen, Michael Karnac Books PDF

EIGEN Book_Eigen5 correx 27/06/2014 15:32 Page 1




Can goodness survive life?

eauty, I believe, is one source of ethics. To see something beautiful can arouse a sense of goodness. Not only a sense of feeling good, but also a sense of wanting to do right by, wanting to do justice to, a world which can be so beautiful, which can so touch one to the depths. Tears of beauty. As Keats says, “A thing of beauty is a joy forever”. An ethics with roots in beauty and joy. Tears of joy, happiness, at times, awe. The world in its uplifting aspect, world as inspiration. An ethics of beauty, joy, inspiration, creativity.

I am thinking now of moments of beauty fused with awe on viewing the great rocks at Yosemite Park in California (Eigen, 2006a).

Yosemite silenced me. Words dissolved. A wordless world for millions of years. Mammoth rocks, mammoth stars. God’s beauty. Tears of awe.

The soul of the rock says, “Come closer.”

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10. TrufTaut and the failure of introjection

Karnac Books ePub


My reflections are on two films by Francois TrufFaut: Uhomme qui aimait lesfemmes (The Man Who Loved Women’, 1977) and La chambre verte (‘The Green Room’, 1978), produced within a year of each other. At a first viewing, they seem to be two very different works, La chambre verte, dramatic and painful, is based on a sombre short story by Henry James, The Altar of the Dead’, and on two other of his works, ‘The Beast in the Jungle’ and ‘The Friends of Friends’. It is the story of Julian Davenne, a Virtuoso’ in necrology, and his passionate loving obsession for one woman alone—his wife who died young—even after her death and until his own death. The other film, Uhomme qui aimait lesfemmes, is a delightfully ironic comedy of the autobiographical type, in which the protagonist continually falls in love with every woman he meets, and in which there is the hint of a delightful touch of foot and leg fetishism.

Both films, however, in spite of the great differences in language, style and narrative, basically tell the same story of the incapacity to love and to make one’s own internal impulse coincide with the encounter with a real person. The protagonist of Uhomme qui aimait lesfemmes does not know how to distinguish or to choose, in a giddy erotic round of seduction, unfaithfulness and disillusion in which the illusion is repeatedly rekindled. In La chambre verte, Julian is imprisoned in a repetitive trap of an opposite kind. Tenaciously faithful to the image of one woman alone, he cannot conceive of a love object unless it is eternally identical to itself. Whether in a state of immobility or in flight, both characters are living outside of real time, enslaved by an obsession.

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Medium 9781855758308

2. Conrad: Regression and Redecision

Erskine, Richard G.; Moursund, Janet P. Karnac Books ePub

The script is our personal blueprint for how we will live our lives: how we experience ourselves, others, the world around us; what we expect will happen if we behave in one way or another; how we feel and what we tell ourselves about those feelings. Begun in earliest infancy, the script comes together into a more or less coherent whole during childhood and is elaborated on and added to throughout our lives. Psychotherapy, if it is to effect lasting change, must affect script. It is script change that allows the client to experience him- or herself as truly different. As the script changes, new options for thinking, feeling, and behaving become salient. In Chapter 1, we described four domains of script-changing therapy: cognitive, behavioral, affective, and physical. Script may be changed through discovering new ways to think (and fantasize) about self and others; through trying out new behaviors in an “experimental” way; through making changes in biochemistry, musculature, or movement patterns; or through reworking the feelings present when the script was formed and as it becomes reactivated in later life. All four of these domains may become involved as the client is led to return, emotionally, to the point in time at which the early decisions and beliefs and perceptions were acquired, and to literally reprogram replacements for that which is no longer working.

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Medium 9781855751415

13. The patient, the frame, and issues of death

Langs, Robert Karnac Books ePub

My exploration and clarification of death-related events and death anxiety as they pertain to psychotherapy patients has repeatedly touched on the ground rules of psychotherapy. To complete this discussion, I therefore turn now to a more focused exploration of the interaction between death-related issues and the framework of psychotherapy—the backbone, context, and most powerful influence on the patient’s therapeutic experience. The intricacies of the connections between rules, frames, and boundaries and death anxiety are one of the most unappreciated yet critical aspects of our subject.


Death anxiety plays a significant role in how patients and therapists deal with the ground rules of therapy, and the vicissitudes of these canons are intimately connected to how each party deals with and adapts to death-related concerns. Both frame-securing and frame-modifying efforts, whether initiated by patient or therapist, are under the influence of strong unconscious motivating sources. Conflicts involving death anxieties play a major role in this respect.

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Medium 9781780490441

Chapter Nine - Outcome Evidence

Karnac Books ePub

David Todd and Stephen Weatherhead

This chapter presents a pragmatic approach to the challenge of gathering outcome evidence, while balancing applying narrative approaches within the predominantly scientific backdrop of brain injury services. In addition to discussing the philosophical and practical discourses, the chapter makes some recommendations, including the increased development of practice-based research networks, and the collection of multiple forms of outcome data.

A pragmatic approach to narrative and outcomes

I think it is fair to say that we (DT and SW) come from slightly different starting points in exploring this issue. I (SW) am much more inclined to position myself within a non-structuralist or social constructionist frame, viewing one's experience as heavily influenced by the narratives we are able to draw upon at any given time. Whereas I (DT) feel more comfortable describing myself as a scientist–practitioner; valuing the selective application of scientific methodology and quantitative research, but recognising the necessity of postmodern perspectives in seeking to conceptualise the human condition in a complex social world.

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